After watching Brazil destroy Spain in the final of the Confederations Cup this afternoon (3-0), I thought it would be a good time to give a shout out to Portland’s Brazilian coffee company, Nossa Familia. I stopped by there last week for a visit to the company’s (fairly) new walk-in espresso bar, on Northwest 13th Avenue, across from the Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA). Last fall, Nossa Familia held a successful Kickstarter campaign to fund the new addition, and as promised, the café brings a touch of Brazil to downtown Portland, offering single-family Brazilian coffees and treats like pão de queijo (bite-sized cheese bread).
The shop had two espressos available on grind as well as a couple of different brewed coffee options. I chose an espresso of Ernesto’s Blend. It was very creamy, with a viscous mouthfeel that lingered on the palate, sweet at first, with hints of raisin and almond, and a black tea finish.
For most people, the shop will be an in-and-out stop, as seating is quite limited. Curious customers can sit next to the interior windows and watch what’s happening inside the roastery. When the weather is warm and sunny, a couple of tables on the loading dock make a nice spot to sit and enjoy a Pearl District afternoon.
One more thing…
Not everything at Nossa Familia’s espresso bar was Brazilian. As I was leaving the shop, I picked up something called a Rip Van Wafel, a small snack imported from Holland. After trying it, my question is, how has this not caught on in the US?
The Wafel consists of two thin, crispy waffle wafers sandwiched around a very thin layer of caramel. The directions tell you to warm it up by resting it on top of a mug of coffee, to melt the caramel and give it a hint of coffee flavor. Dipping or eating them plain work too, and they are tasty.